"Powerful Redemptive Story"
FIREPROOF is an incredibly gripping, compelling, heartrending, transformational story about saving a marriage that is on the rocks. The dramatic structure of this movie written and produced by pastors Alex Kendrick and Stephen Kendrick in Albany, Georgia, is so incredibly good that it overcomes a few amateur acting moments, a wee bit of static dialogue and a few other technical problems. It is a worthy successor to their last movie, FACING THE GIANTS.
Caleb is a fire chief in a small town who gets respect from everyone except his wife, Katherine. Katherine is the public relations officer of the local hospital. Caleb comes home from a dangerous rescue, only to find out that there’s no food in the kitchen. He blows up, and Katherine blasts him for not taking the time to do his own shopping since he has more free time than she does. He tells her that she should stay home and take care of the housework since she doesn’t need to work. She says that she has to work because her aging mother needs a wheelchair and hospital bed that costs thousands of dollars. She also complains that he is saving their money for an expensive boat. She finally nails him for looking at pornography on the Internet.
This marriage has no hope, but Caleb’s father asks him to take 40 days to work through a personal journal to change the way he treats Katherine. Caleb agrees, but Katherine is already interested in a doctor at the hospital, who is very solicitous of her. The more Caleb tries, the more Katherine withdraws.
In the middle of his 40 days, Caleb’s father tells him you need to understand and accept love before you can give love. Although previously Caleb had been hardened to any mention of God and the Gospel, he relents, confesses and accepts Jesus as his Lord and Savior.
Immediately, the situation with Katherine goes from bad to worse. The audience, however, develops an affinity for Caleb. He rescues a little girl from a fire with extreme jeopardy to his own life, only to get to the hospital to be rejected by his own wife. The ending is powerful, emotional and in many ways unexpected.
The Kendrick brothers, who made FIREPROOF and FACING THE GIANTS, display an incredible amount of talent. They have learned their storytelling craft to such a degree of excellence that they should be teaching some of the scriptwriters in the Entertainment Industry. Their plot structure is impeccable. A tiny amount of dialogue at the beginning is static, but within seconds the movie engages and takes the audience on an emotional roller coaster ride until the very end.
Kirk Cameron is excellent in the movie. It is not that he just stands out among all the actors, but he makes Caleb real. The movie is so sophisticated as to have a product shot of Chick-Fil-A and a well-written song as a respite during one of the movie’s most poignant moments.
MOVIEGUIDE® screens a lot of small movies. Most are fraught with mistakes. FIREPROOF may be a small movie in terms of budget, but it’s got a gigantic, well-produced Hollywood heart. How it will perform at the box office is another story. Timing is everything for character dramas. They can easily get swept aside by blockbusters. Advertising and marketing alone will not capture the audience. MOVIEGUIDE®, however, commends everyone involved and even goes so far as to pray for their success.
(CCC, BBB, V, S, M) Very strong Christian worldview with very strong biblical, moral elements with clear presentation of the Gospel, powerful conversions, heartrending confessions, and compelling discipling; no foul language; fireman rescues young girl from burning house and gets burned, firemen rescue two girls trapped in a car accident stuck on railroad tracks as train passes, injuries shown, man bashes inanimate objects with baseball bat; discussions of love and romance, husband and wife kiss and hug each other, husband looks at computer pornography (nothing shown), doctor tries to seduce married woman, but nothing salacious shown; no nudity; no alcohol; no smoking; and, husband wants to divorce wife, wife is susceptible to the advances of a doctor and sin is rebuked.
FIREPROOF is an incredibly gripping, compelling, heartrending, transformational story about saving a marriage that is on the rocks. Kirk Cameron stars as Caleb Holt, a fire chief in a small town who gets respect from everyone except his wife, Katherine, played by Erin Bethea. Katherine is the public relations officer of the local hospital. Caleb and Katherine fight about everything. Their marriage seems to have no hope, but Caleb’s father asks him to take 40 days to work through a personal journal to change the way he treats Katherine. Caleb agrees, but Katherine is already interested in a doctor at the hospital. Only faith in Jesus Christ and repentance can save their relationship.
The ending to FIREPROOF is powerful, emotional and in many ways unexpected. The Kendrick brothers, who also made FACING THE GIANTS with help from their church in Albany, Georgia, display an incredible amount of talent. Their story is perfectly plotted. Kirk Cameron does an excellent job turning Caleb into a real person. Despite its low budget, FIREPROOF is a stirring presentation of the power of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the power of God’s amazing grace.